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POLITENESS PRINCIPLES

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Karen Griffiths

on 10 March 2015

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Transcript of POLITENESS PRINCIPLES

GOFFMAN, BROWN AND LEVINSON, LEECH
POLITENESS PRINCIPLES
LAST WEEK WE CONSIDERED
GRICE AND HIS MAXIMS

Can you remember each maxim and what it stood for?
WE ARE DISCUSSING POLITENESS PRINCIPLES

IN ORDER TO DO THIS, WE WILL BE CONSIDERING THE WORK OF THREE KEY THEORISTS IN ADDITION TO GRICE.

GOFFMAN
LEECH
BROWN AND LEVINSON
SO,WE KNOW THAT TERMS OF ADDRESS
ARE IMPORTANT IN ESTABLISHING IDENTITY AND
THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN SPEAKERS
Go back to the extract that we have been reading in The Crucible. Using the terms that we have so far covered, what can you say about the relationship between Abigail and Parris?
Had enough yet??? Nearly there for today.
MAXIM OF QUANTITY
MAXIM OF QUALITY
MAXIM OF MANNER
MAXIM OF RELEVANCE
SO, LET'S GET STARTED!
Irving Goffman (1955) wrote an important study called
“THE PRESENTATION OF SELF IN EVERYDAY LIFE”
A collection of 6 essays that discussed the image we present of ourselves on a day to day basis.
Terms of address and introductions are often the first way we present ourselves – think about how you would feel if you had introduced yourself or greeted someone inappropriately – how would you feel?
WHERE DOES THIS ALL FIT IN?
What rules can you identify in terms of addressing somebody?
Imagine you are chatting (as one does) with an alien newly landed on earth. How would you explain the rules of introduction/address to them?
In your explanation, consider the following:
The social context of the introduction
The relationship between the speakers
WHAT RULES HAVE YOU IDENTIFIED?
Look at the sheet.
In pairs, discuss and make notes on the following:
Establishing a tone with terms of address?


What do you establish about the relationships from the term of address used?
How important is a term of address when being introduced?
ME, Myself and i!
WHO ARE YOU?
Terms of address

an introduction to face work and politeness theory.
Write down all of the names you have been addressed/introduced as and who called you them.
STARTER TASK
Karen
Kazza!!!
Auntie Kaka
Mrs G
Mrs Griffiths
Kaz
Sis
Mum
Mummy
Miss
Ms
Mate
Madam
She who must be obeyed
Oi!
How each person introduces themselves – what tone and relationship do they establish?
What do you learn about the addressee in each conversation?
How the receptionist responds differently to each individual – why is this do you think?
What other factors might influence the way each individual introduces themself?
We are employing the work of two key theorists here, the first is a guy called GOFFMAN and his
FACE THEORY.
How would you place Britain in terms of face work?
Can you think of other cultures that you could place on the face scale?
What impact does culture have?
Use compliments
Use appropriate terms of address
Use appropriate greetings
Pay attention to other speakers and show interest
Seek agreement (choose safe topics)
Avoid disagreement(pretend to agree, hedge)
Presuppose common ground
Make jokes
Share dialect, informal lexis and grammar
POSITIVE POLITENESS
Addressing positive face needs - the need to be liked
Called the image that we present ourselves to others our “face”.

Once an individual gives out a positive self image of themselves to others they then feel a need to keep or live up to that set image. When individuals are inconsistent with how they project themselves in society, they risk being embarrassed or discredited, therefore the individual remains consistently guarded, making sure that they do not show themselves in an unfavourable way to others.
GOFFMAN (1955)
In English, we still use phrases that give us some clue as to the meaning of “face work”.

In pairs, consider what you understand by the following terms:
“Saving face”
“losing face”
Today
The concept of “face” as we are going to discuss it is Chinese in its origin.


In a recent study, over 98 words were found in a Chinese dictionary to describe the concept.
THINK OF CHINESE CULTURE.
BUCKINGHAM: What says your Highness to my just demand?
KING RICHARD: I do remember me, Henry the Sixth
Did prophecy that Richmond should be King.
When Richmond was a little peevish boy.
A king… perhaps…perhaps –
BUCKINGHAM: My lord!
KING RICHARD: How chance the prophet could not, at that time,
Have told me – I being by – that I should kill him?
BUCKINGHAM: My lord, your promise for the earldom –
KING RICHARD: Richmond! When I was last at Exeter …
Richard III Act 3 scene 4
Recapping terms of address and moving in to FACE THEORY
Could you shut the window please?
It’s cold in here
Please shut the window
Do you think you could possibly close the window?
Shut the window
Shall we shut the window please?
Would you mind awfully closing the window please?
ORDER THE FOLLOWING ACCORDING TO FACE NEEDS
Wrap up unpleasant requests/orders with hedges
Skirt around unpleasant topics
Be indirect
Be pessimistic
Give deference
Be apologetic
Go on record as being indebted
NEGATIVE POLITENESS
Respecting the need for social distance and not intruding.
Developed Goff’s theory
POSITIVE FACE – our need to be liked and accepted
NEGATIVE FACE – our right not to be imposed upon
POLITENESS involves the speaker showing an awareness of the other’s “face needs”
Brown and Levinson
One aspect of the cooperative nature of conversation is that we generally accept the face that others offer us.

If something is said or done that challenges or rejects another’s face, this is termed a “face threatening” act (eg. Telling someone they do not know what they are talking about)

Face work is about maintaining status.

Status often determines the “face needs” of individuals eg. Using deferential language.(think back to Richard III)
Accepting Face
What’s that face supposed to mean?
Each time he speaks, Buckingham addresses King Richard by title.
The king does not use any term of address, but refers to other parties by name instead.
Buckingham is “deferential” to the King and the king is ignoring both his request and his name.
This suggests that Buckingham is in a weak position, begging for a response.
The length of runs also suggests the low status of Buckingham in the exchange, though he does interrupt – a break in politeness in sheer desperation.
What did you note?
WHAT IS FACE WORK?
Take a look at the CHARLOTTE GRAY SHEET - what can you say about the terms of address used?
What can you say about the terms of address?
What do you understand by that phrase?
GO BACK TO THE OPENING OF ACT ONE IN THE CRUCIBLE
To what extent does Abigail pay attention to the face of Parris?
Does Parris challenge Abigail's face? What gives him the 'right' to do this?
FACE
ADJACENCY PAIRS
SPEAKER MOVES
TOPIC SHIFTS/LOOPS
HESITATIONS? FALSE STARTS? INTERRUPTIONS?
NVC
STAGE DIRECTIONS?
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